One of the coolest things about Toyota’s new GR010 Hybrid hypercar program — perhaps the coolest thing — is that the Japanese automaker is also promising to build a limited run of road cars based on the prototype, called the GR Super Sport. The GR Super Sport first emerged as a concept three years ago, and Toyota has been developing it since, using the car to run demonstration laps ahead of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and sending out questionnaires to potential owners.
Unfortunately, there’s a possibility that the plan for a road version may have met an untimely end. Details are extremely limited at the moment, but last week, Racer related a story from a source in Japan that a preproduction vehicle suffered a serious crash during testing at Fuji Speedway and subsequently went up in flames. Seemingly nobody else reported on this, and the source in question wasn’t linked or named. In fact, I can’t track it down anywhere. Hopefully that means none of it is true.
According to Racer, a consequence of that crash might be that the production car program is on life support, and Toyota may abandon it.
If there’s a silver lining to any of this, the possible cancelation of the road car shouldn’t affect the GR010's continued motorsport efforts, like Racer says. Initially, the ACO and FIA said entry into the Hypercar class would require manufacturers to build homologation special versions of their top-flight prototypes, just like they had to in the ’90s. To date, Toyota and Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus have been the only constructors attempting to do that, and the sanctioning bodies never seriously tried to enforce that rule.
In other words, Toyota doesn’t need to build and sell examples of the GR Super Sport; it was only doing that because it wanted to. So if the company’s now in over its head, it could simply give up.
Again, though — this is all theoretical, based on a flimsy report that hasn’t been substantially backed up. We’ve reached out to a contact at Toyota Europe for clarification, and hopefully they can provide some insight and tell us the whole thing is as fishy as it sounds.